The Project Gutenberg eBook, The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction, Vol. 19, Issue 552, June 16, 1832, by Various

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Title: The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction, Vol. 19, Issue 552, June 16, 1832

Author: Various

Release Date: March 17, 2004 [eBook #11616]

Language: English

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E-text prepared by Jonathan Ingram, David King,
and the Project Gutenberg Online Distributed Proofreading Team

[pg 385]


Vol. 19. No. 552.] SATURDAY, JUNE 16, 1832 [PRICE 2d.


The Zoological Society possess several Zebus, or Indian oxen. These were formerly considered a distinct species, but zoologists are now of opinion that the Zebu is merely a variety of the common ox, "although," as Mr. Bennett observes, "it is difficult to ascertain the causes by which the distinctive characters of the two races have been in the process of time gradually produced."1 Their anatomical structure is precisely the same, and the only circumstances in which the two animals differ consist in the fatty hump on the shoulders of the Zebu, and in the somewhat more slender and delicate make of its legs.

The object of the Zoological Society in their collection of Zebus is the introduction of an improved breed of oxen. The larger specimens are kept at the farm at Kingston Hill, and only a pair of small ones are reserved for the Gardens, in addition to the Brahmin Bull, who occupies the central division of the Cattle Shed.

Brahmin Bull in Cattle Shed.

The specimen before us has been received by the Society from India, and is one of the largest that has ever been seen in Europe. It is equal in size to the larger breeds of our native oxen, and is of a slaty grey on the body and head; [pg 386] with cream-coloured legs and dewlap, the latter exceedingly long and pendulous; very short horns directed upwards and outwards; and ears of great proportional magnitude, and so flexible and obedient to the animal's will as to be moved in all directions with the greatest facility. Although a full-grown male, he is perfectly quiet, good-tempered, and submissive, and receives the caresses of strangers with apparent satisfaction.

The whole of the breeds of Zebus are treated with great veneration by the Hindoos, who hold it sinful to deprive them of life under any pretext whatever. They are in general used as beasts of draft, principally for purposes of husbandry, but a select number (of which the specimen before us is one,) are exempted from all services, and even idolized.

Bishop Heber,2 calls them Brahminy Bulls, and tells us they are turned out when calves, on different solemn occasions by wealthy Hindoos, as an acceptable offering to Siva. It would be a mortal sin to strike or injure them. They feed where they choose, and devout persons take great delight in pampering them. They are exceeding pests in the villages near Calcutta, breaking into gardens, thrusting their noses into the stalls of fruiterers and pastry-cook's shops, and helping themselves without ceremony. Like other petted animals, they are sometimes mischievous, and are said to resent with a push of their horns any delay in gratifying their wishes.

We may here in connexion with the Zoological Gardens, not inappropriately introduce the following graphic passage from the concluding Number of Mr. Landseer's "Characteristic Sketches of Animals." It appears as a "Note by the Editor," Mr. John Barrow, and represents the labours of the Zoological Society as very gratifying to the subscribers and the public.3

"By the spirit and perseverance with which they have succeeded in domiciling their magnificent collection of living animals in the Regent's Park—by the knowledge and experience they have evinced in the arrangements adopted in that establishment, and the good taste, skill, and industry, they have employed in carrying into effect its multiplied details—they have accomplished a task of far higher importance, and of infinitely nobler character, than that of merely providing for all classes of an enlightened metropolis an additional source of amusement and recreation. Such a collection, so maintained and so displayed, advances—slowly but certainly—the best interests of morals and philosophy. The curiosity which it excites, the gratification it affords, operate, though with differing degrees of intensity, on the most uncultivated and the best informed of those who visit it, to beget inquiry and awaken reflection; and in what can inquiry and reflection, thus originated, determine, but in producing or extending the most sublime impressions of the beneficence, the power, and the providence, of the Great Author of Creation? The physical mechanism of birds, the muscular energies of brutes, strike us at first with wonder, or move us with mingled terror and delight; but the activity of the human mind will not suffer us long to remain at this point of simple excitement. We involuntarily begin to analyze the properties of animals, the relations of their structure to those properties, the adaptation of the parts to the whole of that structure, and the conformity of their physical endowment and their instincts to the various habitats or regions in which they respectively exist. Whether we reason from causes to effects, as from instinct to habit; or endeavour, upon an inverted process, to arrive from the consideration of effects at causes, as from habit to instinct; or attempt, upon the analysis and analogies of admitted facts in the natural history of one animal, to deduce a theory of the history of another,—we shall find this mysterious but beautiful chain of relation and adaptation unbroken, impassable, perpetual.

"Observe how this infant colony, of which we are especially speaking, has already been peopled! The majestic rusa, captured in the sultry forests of Bengal, and the elegant gazelle, which has once bounded over the parching deserts of Barbary, have become intimate and make their couch with the white reindeer, brought from the icy wastes of Lapland. The misshapen but harmless kangaroo of New Holland is a fellow-lodger with the ferocious gnu of Southern Africa; and the patient llama, who has left the snowy sides and precipitous defiles of the Andes, contemplates without terror its formidable neighbours, the wolf of the Pyrenees, and the bear of the stupendous mountains of Thibet. In the immediate vicinity of the sacred bull, whose consecrated life has heretofore been passed in luxurious freedom or insolent enjoyment on the banks of the Ganges or the Jumna—feeds the gaunt and shaggy bison, which crops [pg 387] with sullen tranquillity a herbage more nutritious but less grateful to him than he loved to cull among the stony pastures of the Alleghany range, or of the howling solitudes surrounding Hudson's Bay. Though thousands of leagues have interposed between the arid sands from which they have been imported into this peaceful and common home, the camel of the Thebais, as he ruminates in his grassy parterre, surveys with composed surprise the wild dog of the Tierra del Fuego and the sharp-eyed dingo of Australia. Around the ghastly sloth-bear, disentombed from his burrows in the gloomiest woods of Mysore or Canara—and his more lively congener of Russia—the armadillo of Brazil and the pine marten of Norway display a vivacity of action and a cheerfulness of gesture which captivity seems powerless to repress. The elephant of Ceylon, and the noble wapiti of the Canadas, repose beneath the same roof; and from his bath, or his pavilion, the Arctic bear contemplates—not his native rocks and solitudes, the crashing of icebergs, and the Polar seas, alternately lashed into terrific fury or hemmed in by accumulating precipices of ice; but—monkeys of almost every size, form, and family, which gambol in the woods of Numidia or Gundwana; in the loftiest trees of Sumatra; on the mountains of Java; by the rivers of Paraguay and Hindustan; of South America and South Asia; among the jungly banks of the Godavery and the woody shores of the Pamoni, of the Oroonoko, and the Bramahputra—in short, in every sunny clime and region where the rigours of his own winter are not only unknown, but inconceivable. There is something sublime in the mere consideration of the prodigious remoteness from one another of the various points from which these animals have thus been collected; something gratifying to human pride, in the thought that neither the freezing atmosphere of the countries which surround the Pole, nor the fierce heats of those which lie beneath the Line, or are enclosed between the Tropics—neither destructive climates, nor trackless deserts, nor stormy oceans, can interpose obstacles powerful enough to quell the enterprise of man!—that the rocky caverns of the loneliest sea-coasts, and the deepest recesses of inland forests, are insufficient to protect from him the most terrible beasts of prey which inhabit them;—and that, in short, all the kingdoms of nature pay tribute to his sagacity or his power, his courage or his curiosity. This feeling is heightened, amidst the scene we have attempted to describe, by still more numerous representatives of the feathered race. Birds of the boldest wing and brightest hues—the denizens of the woods and the waters—of every variety of plumage, habit, song, and size—from the splendid macaw and toucan to the uncouth pelican and the shapeless puffin—from the gigantic ostrich to the beautiful but diminutive golden wren; in short, all the birds which are congregated in this spot come, literally, from every corner of our globe. The great alpine vulture may have sailed above the heights of Hohenlinden; the Egyptian vulture have roosted on the terraced roofs of Cairo, or among the sacred walls of Phylæ; the condor, have built in the ruined palaces of the Incas of Peru; the flamingo or the ibis have waded through the lakes and marshes which surround the desolation of Babylon; the eagle of America have ranged, perhaps daily, over those narrow straits which separate two worlds and bid defiance to all navigation! The emu has long since tracked the vast interior of that fifth continent whose inland rivers, tribes of mankind, quadrupeds, and mineral and vegetable productions, remain still, to us, sealed mysteries. The crowned crane has drawn its food from the waters of that vast lake of Tschad, in the search for which so many Europeans have perished; the little stormy petrel, borne on the surge, or wafted by the gale, has travelled to every shore that has been visited by the tempests in which it loves to rove; and the wandering stork, like the restless swallow, has nestled, indifferently, among the chimneys of Amsterdam, the campaniles of Rome or of Pisa, and on the housetops of Timbuctoo. In looking round upon these various birds and quadrupeds of all the regions of our globe—in considering the distant countries of their birth—their strangeness to us in feature or in form—the endless varieties of their instincts, their habits, their affections, their antipathies, their appetites—the several important offices they are destined to perform in what may be called the physical economy of the world,—in observing the powers of offence in some, of defence in others, and the astonishing means which have been supplied to certain classes of them destitute both of one and the other, of procuring their subsistence with equal facility,—it is surely impossible not to ascend to the contemplation of that all-wise and benevolent Power which has called all these creations into being, and thus informed and thus endowed them!"

[pg 388]


(To the Editor.)

In No. 546, of The Mirror, you gave a History of Old Saint Pancras Church. Will you allow me to say that it is not at a Church in the South of France, where prayers are said for the souls of those that are buried here, but at the Church of St. Peter, at Rome. A writer in the Morning Herald of August, 1825, states thus: "The History of the Old Church of Saint Pancras is not a little singular; it is one of the oldest in the county of Middlesex, and the parish it belongs to one of the largest, being eighteen miles in circumference. The name was sent from Rome by the Pope, expressly for this church, which has the only general Catholic burial ground in England; and mass is daily said in St. Peter's, at Rome, for the repose of the souls of the faithful, whose bodies are deposited therein; and it was also the last church in England whose bell tolled for mass, or in which any Catholic rites were celebrated. A few months ago an Italian showed me an Italian prayer-book, in which was a coloured drawing of St. Pancras Church; he told me it was held in great veneration at Rome, and prayers are said daily in St. Peter's, for its prosperity, and it is considered to be the oldest church now standing in Europe." A writer in the Gentleman's Magazine, 1749, states thus: "Christ's sacred altar here first Britain saw. Saint Pancras is included in that land granted by Ethelbert, the fifth King of Kent, to the Cathedral Church of St. Paul, London, about the year 603. The first mention that has been found to be made of this church, occurs in the year 1183; but it does not appear whether it was, or was not, of recent erection."

It is said there was a silver tomb in this church, which was probably taken away at the time of the commonwealth. About a mile from the church, in a field in Kentish Town, is the Gospel Oak, under which, tradition says, that Saint Austin, or one of his monks, preached. Near the church was a medicinal spa, which once attained some celebrity under the name of St. Pancras' Well, and was held in such estimation as to occasion great resort of company to it during the season. It is said the water was tasteless, but had a slight cathartic property.

Dr. Stukely, in a work published in 1756, says there was a Roman camp where St. Pancras Church stands.

The old church was repaired in 1827, when the old gallery was taken down. It was reopened under the name of St. Pancras Chapel, August 1828, by the Rev. James Moore, L.L.D., the Vicar; on which occasion he delivered a lecture, in which he gave a history of the church.

Since the year 1822, five new churches have been erected in this parish: the New St. Pancras Church, Euston-square; Regent Church, Sidmouth-street; Somers Church, Seymour-street; Camden Church, Pratt-street; and Highgate Church, on the Hill.

The first Bishop of Calcutta, the Rev. Thomas Fanshaw Middleton, D.D. was Vicar of St. Pancras. He died of a stroke of the sun, on the 8th of July, 1822. A Parishioner of St. Pancras.


(For the Mirror.)

There was a maiden once would come and sit

Upon our mountain, the long summer day;

And watch'd the sun, till he had beauteous lit

The mist-envelop'd rocks of Mona grey:

Beneath whose base, the timid hinds would say,

Her lover perish'd; and from that dread hour,

Bereft of reason's mind ennobling ray,

Poor Mary droop'd: Llanellian's fairest flower!

Why gazeth she thus lone; can those soft eyes

Interpret aught in each dim cloud above?

Yes, there's more joy in her wild phantasies

Than reasons in its sober power could prove.

List to her wild laugh now; she smiles and cries,

It is my William's form; he beckons from you skies.

The Author of a Tradesman's Lays4

This little metrical record is founded on fact. In the year 1808, a young female visited the grey, sterile mountain tract of Cefu Ogo, in Denbighshire, each day successively for two months. Her lover, who was a seaman on board one of the Welsh traders, had often met her there, and a tranquil, uninterrupted walk it afforded them, for exchanging the reciprocities of their mutual affection. He was lost not far from the iron-bound coast of Carnarvonshire, but nearer towards Anglesea. I saw her frequently, and her demeanour was most peaceable, except towards the evening, when her benighted fancy would conjure up a variety of pleasing expressions, which were uttered in the Welsh language; and were invariably directed towards her lover, whom she often fancied was present with her. I was happy to hear, that through the kind superintendence of the late Dr. Jones, of Denbigh, she in a great measure recovered her faculties, but died two or three years after at Liverpool.

[pg 389]


(For the Mirror.)

"Each scene of many-colour'd life he drew

Exhausted worlds,—and then imagin'd knew."


So much has been said, and said so well, respecting the writings of Shakspeare and the peculiar character of his genius, that it would be a hopeless as well as a presumptuous task to attempt adding anything to public information on that head. But I know not that any one has ventured to point out a few of those instances in which our great dramatist has stooped to plagiarize. That he must have done so, at least occasionally, is a matter of course, as no voluminous writings were ever given to the world that were not the result of study as well as original thought, for genius must ever be corrected by judgment, and what is judgment but the child of experience and study? Observation alone can tell us, that man is an imitative animal, and philosophy teaches us that his ideas are not innate; he must borrow them at first in a simple form from those around him, and though by the association of these ideas, and the gradual extension and improvement of them, he may eventually generate new ones, yet some traces cannot but remain of what was originally lodged in the mind, and will come into play as occasion may call them forth. Shakspeare was a perfect master of human nature, but he was a master of our language as well; he was indeed one of those who have improved it, but he could never have himself arrived at the degree of perfection in which he found it, had he not derived assistance from others, and made himself intimately acquainted with our purest national works of talent. Thus, he could never have been so ignorant as he is said to have been of English literature.

Little is known of Shakspeare's earlier years, except that he was sent to the free school at Stratford, where he acquired the rudiments of the learned languages; that he was never a distinguished classic is certain, but it is equally certain that he must have been acquainted with the Greek dramatists by the use of translations, though he may not have had scholarship enough to study them in the original. So many parallel passages might be drawn from this source, that the task would be an endless one; besides the fact is so well known and admitted, that it would be unnecessary. "We find him," says Mr. Pope, "very knowing in all the customs of antiquity." In Julius Caesar, Coriolanus, and other plays where the scene is laid at Rome, not only the spirit but the manners of the ancient Romans is exactly shown, and his reading in the ancient historians is no less conspicuous. It is well known at the universities of this country, that on any public examination, be the play either tragic or comic, the students are frequently required to produce parallel passages from the writings of Shakspeare: now it might indeed with some reason be supposed that occasionally the same ideas would present themselves to different minds, and where two writers are equally well acquainted with the nature of man, and equally skilled in analyzing his passions, it might well, I say, be supposed, that such true and acute observation would suggest similar ideas, and perhaps even the same method of defining them. Yet when this similarity is frequent instead of occasional, when the unusual peculiarity of the sentiment renders it startling and suspicious, then the above supposition becomes too extensive even for prejudice to admit. Such however is the case here, and so the matter stands between Shakspeare and the ancient dramatists. Even some of the machinery he has made use of is not his own. Thus, the seemingly ingenious introduction of "The Play" into Hamlet, is borrowed from an old Greek drama, where Alexander, the tyrant of Pharos, is struck with remorse for his crimes upon viewing similar cruelties to his own, practised upon the stage.

At that earlier period of literature when Shakspeare flourished, books were few in number, and consequently scarce; yet there can be no doubt that our author seized every opportunity of improving and strengthening his mind: whether he had any acquaintance with the modern languages is unknown, but he has certainly introduced many French scenes in his works, and he has taken several of his plots, such as that of Romeo and Juliet, from the Italians. As to his own language, he is said to have made the poems of Chaucer principally his study, so that it would not be quite fair to produce any plagiarisms from that writer; but I give the reader a few specimens of English literature taken from other quarters, which seem to have afforded Shakspeare ideas, or else matter, to work upon. The following passage is from one of our oldest dramas, and it will readily call to the recollection of the reader, the celebrated speech of Claudio in Measure for Measure:

[pg 390]

"To die is sure to go we know not whither,

We lie in silent darkness, and we rot.

Perhaps the spirit, which is future life,

Dwells, salamander-like, unharm'd in fire,

Or else with wand'ring winds is blown about

The world; but if condemned like those

Whom our uncertain thought imagines howling,

Then the most loath'd and the most weary life,

Which age, ache, penury or imprisonment

Can lay on nature, is a Paradise.

To what we fear of death."

The sentences that follow are from a small historical work I have fallen in with, written in old English, but without its date; about a fourth part of the matter contained in this little book is to be found woven into the different historical plays of Shakspeare, but the underwritten extracts are very nearly in his own words, allowing, of course, for the more poetical expression.

(Fall of Wolsey.) "Being near his end, he called Sir William Kingston to him, and said, 'Pray, present my duty to his majesty, who is a noble and gallant prince, and of a resolved mind, for he will venture the loss of his kingdom, rather than be contradicted in his desires. And now, Mr. Kingston, had I but served my God as diligently as I have served the king, he never would have forsaken me in my grey hairs!'" (Compare this with Cardinal Wolsey's speech to Cromwell, Henry VIII., Act iii.)

Amongst other particulars in this book, concerning Richard III. we have the following: "The Protector coming in council, seemed more than ordinarily merry, and after some other discourses, 'My lord (says he to the Bishop of Ely) you have very good strawberries in your garden in Holborn, pray let us have a dish of them.' 'With all my heart,' replied the bishop, and sent for some. Afterwards, the Protector knit his brows and his lips, and rising up in great wrath, he exclaimed, 'My lords, I have to tell you, that that old sorceress, my brother Edward's widow, and her partner, that common prostitute, Jane Shore, have by witchcraft and enchantment been contriving to take away my life, and though by God's mercy they have not been able to finish this villany, yet see the mischief they have done me; (and then he showed his left arm,) how they have caused this dear limb of mine to wither and grow useless.'" (Vide Richard III. Act iii. Scene 2.)

Shakspeare was contemporary with Bacon, and he no doubt valued and studied with attention, the writings of that great man. The working up of the splendid dialogue between Iago and Othello, may not impossibly have been suggested by this sentence of Lord Bacon: "Breaking off in the midst of what one was about to say, (as if he took himself up) breeds a greater appetite in him with whom you confer, to know more." (Vide Essays.)

But let us drop the tone of attempted criticism, which ill becomes an embryo writer at any time, and still less so when Shakspeare is the theme. Having mentioned Bacon, perhaps the following authenticated dialogue may not be uninteresting to the reader, especially as it is only to be met with in one or two scarce books:

(Shakspeare.) "I have heard, my lord, that a certain arch in Trinity College, Cambridge, would stand until a greater man than your lordship should pass through it."

(Bacon.) "Did you ever pass through it, Mr. Shakspeare?"

(Shakspeare.) "No, my lord, I never was at Cambridge."

(Bacon.) "Then we cannot decide which of us two is the greater man. I am told that most of the professors there pass under the arch without tear; which indeed shows a wise contempt of the superstition."

(Shakspeare.) "I rejoice to think that the world is yet to have a greater man than your lordship, since the arch must fall at last."

Several of Shakspeare's least amusing plays are supposed to be not of his composition, such as Henry VI., and Troilus and Cressida, with the exception of the master-touches and some of the finer speeches, which probably were introduced by him. This, however, is a trick of trade in every department of science; and when we see, for instance, the collected works of some great artist, it would be ridiculous to suppose that his whole lifetime could have sufficed for so much handicraft, and perhaps in reality, only the faces and more delicate parts were the work of his pencil.

To return to Shakspeare. The objections to his style, which are many, especially to a more modern reader, are excusable from several causes. The writers of the Elizabethan age and previously, were all of them very coarse in their mode of expression, and the dramatists not very delicate in their plots, though in doing so they did but obey the dictates of fashion and the bad taste of the times. Even prolixity and circumlocution were countenanced, and the insufferable conceits we meet with in the poems of Donne, Cowley, and others, were highly relished in those days. Euphaeism (mentioned so often by Sir W. Scott in The Abbot,) [pg 391] was also then in vogue, and all these various peculiarities of style, language, &c. were indispensable in all that was offered to the public. Shakspeare's fondness and propensity for punning may claim the same excuse, viz. "the hoary head and furrowed face of custom;" yet there are some of these puns interspersed through his works, which are sad blots indeed to our modern fastidious eyes, and that we could well wish to see expunged; such a one now is this:

"Say, 'pardon,' king, let pity teach thee now."

"Speak it in French, king, say, 'pardonnez moi.'"

"A quibble (says Dr. Johnson,) gave him such delight that he was content to purchase it by the sacrifice of reason, of propriety, and even of truth; a quibble was to him the fatal Cleopatra for which he lost the world, and was content to lose it!"

Schiller, who is styled "the Shakspeare of Germany," and who is so ardently admired at the present day, has indeed taken our author for his model; he has in many respects been too servile a student, for his plagiarisms are both close and numerous. Thus, any one acquainted with his celebrated play of The Robbers, will readily recollect that the whole story is built upon the secondary plot in King Lear, between the Duke of Gloucester and his two sons; one of these who is a natural child, and a villain withal, contrives to poison the mind of the father, and to eject the legitimate son from his favour; it will be found exactly thus in Schiller's famous story of "The Robbers." It must be acknowledged, however, that foreigners in general have never idolized Shakspeare, or paid him that devoted adoration, which his countrymen both pay and think him entitled to. Hear Voltaire's overdrawn and even paltry criticism of Hamlet. "The tragedy of Hamlet is a gross and barbarous composition, which would not be supported by the lowest populace in France and Italy. Hamlet goes mad in the second act, Ophelia in the third; he takes the father of his mistress for a rat, and runs him through the body. In despair, the heroine drowns herself. Her grave is dug on the stage, while the grave-diggers enter into a conversation suitable (!) to such low wretches, and play, as it were, with dead men's bones! Hamlet answers their abominable stuff, with follies equally disgusting. Hamlet, with his father and mother-in-law, drink together upon the stage; they sing at table, afterwards they quarrel, and battle and death ensue. In short, one might take this performance for the fruits of the imagination of a drunken savage." (Letters on the English Nation.)

In another place, this writer says, "Shakspeare had not a single spark of good taste, or knew one rule of the drama. In one of his monstrous farces, to which he has given the name of Tragedies, we find the jokes of the Roman shoemakers and cobblers introduced in the same scene with the orations of Brutus and Antony." (See Voltaire's Essays on Tragedy and Comedy.) Here this rival dramatist again objects to any introduction of the lower orders on the stage, and seems averse to whatever is natural, and to depicting life as it is; but if any excuse is necessary for Shakspeare on this head, we must remember that the stage was in his time, and indeed is now perhaps, more particularly levelled to please the populace, and its success more immediately depends on the common suffrage; accordingly the scenes of our English drama, and Shakspeare's scenes particularly, are very often laid among tradesmen and mechanics, and though it may be contrary to all good taste, the author is compelled to indulge in bombast expressions, pompous and thundering rhymes, and sometimes even ribaldry and mean, unmannerly buffoonery.

During his lifetime, Shakspeare acquired reputation principally through his poems, which from some unaccountable cause, are now comparatively neglected, and we may add unfortunately so for the enjoyment of the public. These poems were more admired than his plays, and what speaks higher in their favour, they are more expressively alluded to by contemporary writers. The "Venus and Adonis" is a splendid piece of composition, and very touching in its sentiment; even its illustrious author was proud to call it "the first heir of his invention." We have from it one of our most popular songs, which constitutes one of its stanzas:

"Bid me discourse, I will enchant thine ear,

Or like a fairy, trip upon the green,

Or like a nymph with long dishevell'd hair

Dance on the sands, and yet no footing seen."

His ready talent for composition was singular, and perhaps unparalleled; his mind and hand ever went together, and it is reported he was never known to blot a line. He was an actor occasionally in his own plays, but it does not indeed appear that he excelled in this art.

Shakspeare never considered his works worthy of posterity, and was little careful of popularity while he lived; having acquired a competency by his labours, he retired to Stratford, and spent the [pg 392] remainder of his life in ease and retirement, like a private gentleman. His income was estimated at £200. The epitaph—not that on his monument, but on the rude stone actually covering his remains is to the following effect, and thus curiously written:

"Good friend, for Jesus SAKE forbeare

To digg T—E dust EncloAsed HERE


Blese be T—E man spares TEs stones

T y

And curst be hey moves my bones."

I conclude this rather desultory article with Lord Lyttleton's splendid eulogy on him, which in a few words expresses more than the finest Philippic to his memory—"If all human things were to perish except the works of Shakspeare, it might still be known from them what sort of a creature Man was!"




Few parishes in the environs of London are so rich in architectural antiquities as the "considerable village" of Islington. Canonbury-house, of which a solitary tower remains, is said to have been the country-residence of the Priors of St. Bartholomew, and to have been rebuilt early in the 16th century. Highbury belonged also to the Priory. The existing relics are chiefly of the Elizabethan age. The lodge, represented in the cut, belonged to an old mansion; the property of the Fowler family, built in 1595, which appears on a ceiling. The house fronts Cross-street, and the lodge is at the extremity of the garden, and adjoins Canonbury Fields. It is most probable that this was built as a summer-house by Sir Thomas Fowler, the younger, whose arms are placed in the wall, with the date 1655. It has been absurdly called Queen Elizabeth's Lodge, but with no other foundation than her majesty having passed through it when on a visit to Sir Thomas Fowler.

The Fowlers appear to have been of some note. Sir Thomas Fowler, the elder, who died in 1624, was one of the jury on Sir Walter Raleigh's trial: his son, Sir Thomas, was created a baronet in 1628; the title became extinct at his death. Some coats of arms were taken out of the windows of the old mansion. Among these were the arms of Fowler and Heron. Thomas Fowler, the first of the family who settled at Islington married the daughter of Herne, or Heron, of that place.5

The Pied Bull, near Islington Church, is stated to have been the residence of Sir Walter Raleigh; though Oldys, in his Life of Raleigh, says there is no proof of it; and John Shirley, of Islington, another of Raleigh's biographers, records nothing of his living there. The statement is, however, renewed in a Life of Sir Walter, published in 1740.

[pg 393]



By the aid of Mr. Burford's panoramic pencil, the sight-hunter of our times may enjoy a kind of imaginary tour through the world. At one season he wafts us to the balmy climes of India—next he astounds us with the icy sublimities of the Pole (a fine summer panorama, by the way)—then to the glittering spires, minarets, and mosques of Constantinople—then to the infant world of New Holland—and back to the Old World, to enjoy scenes and sites which are hallowed in memory's fond shrine, by their association with the most glorious names and events in our history. We remember the philosophical amusement of the great Lord Shaftesbury, in contriving all the world in an acre in his retreat at Reigate: what his Lordship laboured to represent in his garden, Mr. Burford essays in his panoramas—in short, he gives us all the world on an acre—of canvass.

Reader, we do not hold the grand secret of life to be the art of hoaxing, when we tell you that for a Greenwich fare you may be transported to the classic regions of Italy—that a walk to Leicester Square will probably delight you more than a ride to Greenwich, little as we are inclined to underrate the last of the pleasures of the people. The contrast is forcible, and the intellectual advantage to be enjoyed in the metropolis too evident to be overlooked.

At the Panorama, Florence is in the upper circle, and Milan in the lower one. The main attraction of the latter is the celebrated cathedral, which forms, as it were, the nucleus of the scene. The point of view has been objected to, as the spectator is placed about mid-way up the cathedral, and thus looks down into the streets and squares of the city; but, it should be remembered, that he also enjoys the distant country, which he could not have done had the view been from the area of the city; and, as we have before said, the beauty of the paysage is one of the perfections of Mr. Burford's paintings. Its present success may be told from the Description:

"Beyond, the eye ranges to an immense distance over the rich and fertile plains of Lombardy, Piedmont, and the Venetian States, luxuriant with every description of rural beauty, intersected by rivers and lakes, and thickly studded with towns and villages, with their attendant gardens, groves, and vineyards. The Northern horizon, from East to West, is bounded by the vast chain of the Alps, which form a magnificent semicircle at from eighty to one hundred and twenty miles distant, Monte Rosa, Monte Cenis, Monte St. Gothard, the Simplon, &c. covered with eternal snow, being conspicuous from their towering height; towards the South the view is bounded by the Apennines, extending across the peninsula from the Mediterranean to the Adriatic; and on the South-west, the Piedmontese hills, in the neighbourhood of Turin, appear a faint purple line on the horizon, so small as to be scarcely visible; the purity of the atmosphere enables the eye to discern the most distant objects with accuracy, and the brilliant sunshine gives inconceivable splendour to every part of the scene; each antique spire and curiously-wrought tower sparkles brightly in its beams, whilst the dark foliage of fine trees, even in the heart of the city, relieves the eye, and produces a beautiful and pleasing effect."

The cathedral will be recollected as the finest specimen extant of pointed Gothic architecture, and termed by the Milanese, the eighth wonder of the world. It is entirely of white marble, and its highest point four hundred feet from the base. A better idea of its minute as well as vast beauty will be afforded by the reader turning to our engraving of the exterior in vol. xiv. of The Mirror. It is successfully painted in the Panorama, although it has not the dazzling whiteness that a stranger might expect; and, on it are those beautiful tinges which are thought to be shed by the atmosphere upon buildings of any considerable age. This effect is visible ever in the fine climate of Italy: it is ingeniously referred to by Sir Humphry Davy in his last work6 to the chemical agency of water. He speaks, however, rather of the decay produced by water, of which tinge is but the first stage. The latter is very pleasing, and, about two years since, the fine portico of the Colosseum, in the Regent's Park, was artificially coloured to produce this effect of time, as it has been poetically considered.

The City of Milan is not particularly interesting, though to an untravelled beholder, it has points of attraction. He may probably be struck with the vast extent of some of the structures when compared with the puny buildings of our own country and times; and the space occupied by the palaces will but remind him of the mistaken magnificence of [pg 394] Buckingham, or the gloomy grandeur of St. James's. Again, the plastered and fancifully coloured fronts of the dwelling-houses, their gay draperies, &c. but ill-assort with the heavy red-brick exteriors of our metropolis; although this contrast is to be sought elsewhere than in externals. Mr. Burford's summary, or characteristics of the city may be quoted:

"The form of the city is nearly circular, about ten miles in circumference, although perhaps the thickly built and more densely populated part may be confined to an area of half that size. There are several large and handsome squares, but the streets, with very few exceptions, are neither wide nor regular; the pavement is formed like that of Paris, of small, sharp pebbles, with occasionally a narrow footway on each side, and the addition of two (or in the wider streets four) strips of flat stones in the centre, forming a sort of railway, on which the carriage wheels run with great smoothness and very little noise. The churches, hospitals, establishments for the poor, and other public institutions, are numerous, and display all the richness and magnificence of Italian architecture, and are at the same time endowed on a most liberal scale; the ancient palaces of the nobles, vast and rude, bear stamp of the importance of the city in the middle ages, when they served as domestic fortresses and lodged well-appointed and numerous retinues; and although they cannot at present vie with those of Rome or Genoa, yet they display considerable architectural luxury, and contain fine collections of works of art; attached to many are large and well-stocked gardens, which add much to the beauty of the city. Very little regard is paid to regularity of appearance in the general buildings; they vary in height from two to five stories, and are built of brick, or granite from the Lago Maggiori, plastered, coloured, or ornamented, according to the taste of the owner; many are still without the luxury of glass in the windows; the shops are numerous and well furnished; their entrances, as well as those of the coffee-houses, are frequently defended only by a coloured drapery, which, with the silk tapestry hung at the church doors, and occasionally from the balconies, &c., has a gay and pleasing effect; indeed the whole appearance of the city is cheerful and flourishing."

The groupes and incidents in the streets will amuse the spectator. There is Policinel—the eternal Punch—with his audience, a short distance from the Cathedral. All over Europe, the most enlightened portion of the world, is this little Motley to be seen frolicking with flashes of satire; the motto for his proscenium should be hic et ubique.

One of the beauties of this Panorama is the masterly effect of the Italian sky. There are fewer cloudless days in Italy than the stranger may imagine, but Mr. Burford was fortunate in his season.



There is a good share of pleasant patter in the following abridged from the Metropolitan.

"Every one says that I am an odd person; I presume I am, and so is every one else taken singly. I can prove that by Cocker. One and one make two—two is even, one is odd, I am but one. There's logic for you. I am also a rambler by temperament. I ramble my person at my own free will, and my mind rambles quite indifferent as to its intimate connexion with the former. I look at the stars, and my thoughts are of women—I look at the earth, and my thoughts run upon heaven—I frequent the opera, and moralize upon the world and its vanities—I sit in my pew at church, and my thoughts ramble every where in spite of my endeavours and those of the parson to boot—I live in town all the year, because it's the fashion to be here in the season, and because I prefer London most when I can walk about where there is nobody to interrupt me. In the season, I am allowed to walk into every body's house, very often get an invite to fill up an odd corner, and as there generally is an odd corner at every party, and I do not stand at a short notice, I eat more good dinners than most people. I am not a fool, and yet not too clever, so that poised in that happy medium, I hear all, see all, know a great deal of what is going on, and hold my tongue. When people inhabit their town houses, I spend the whole day going from one to the other. I consider a house the only safe part of the metropolis. Were I to frequent the street during the season, I am so apt to fall into a brown study, that I'm certain to be jostled until I am black and blue—I have found myself calculating an arithmetical problem at a crossing, and have not been aware of my danger until a pair of greys sixteen hands high in full trot have snorted in my face—I am an idler by profession, live at a club, sleep [pg 395] at chambers, and have just sufficient means to pay my way and indulge my disposition. But I've not stated why I particularly like town when it is empty. It is because I feel relieved of all the fashionable et ceteras. By the time the season is over I am tired of dinners, of wine, of the opera, the eternal announcement of visiters at parties and balls, the music, the exotics, the suppers, the rattling of carriages, and the rattling of tongues. I rejoice at last to find London en deshabille—I can then do as I please without any fear of losing my character as a fashionable man. I consider that I can in London extract more amusement in a given quantity of ground than at any other place. A street will occupy me for a whole day: with an indifferent coat, and nothing but silver in my waistcoat pocket, I stop at every shop-window and examine every thing. Should it so happen that the prices are affixed to every article displayed, I make it a rule to read every one of them. I know therefore when Urling's lace is remarkably cheap, the value of most articles of millinery, the relative demands for boots, shoes, and hats, and prices of 'reach-me-downs' at a ready-made warehouse. At a pawn-broker's shop-window I have passed two or three hours very agreeably in ascertaining the sums at which every variety of second-hand goods are 'remarkably cheap,' from a large folio Bible as divinity, flutes and flageolets as music, pictures and china as taste, gold and silver articles as luxury, wedding rings as happiness, and duelling pistols as death. I could not of course indulge in these peripatetic fancies during the season without losing caste, but there is a season for all things."

"Talking of pictures, by the way, what a marvellous falling off is there in Wilkie!—a misfortune arising, as I take it, from a struggle after novelty of style. There is a portrait of the King by him in Somerset House Exhibition, like nothing on earth but a White Lion on its hinder legs, and there was one a year or two since of George the Fourth in a Highland dress—a powerful representation of Lady Charlotte Bury, dressed for Norval. Look at that gem of art, his Blind Fiddler, now in the National Gallery, or at his Waterloo Gazette, or at the Rent Day, and compare any one of them with the senseless stuff he now produces, and grieve. His John Knox—ill placed for effect, as relates to its height from the ground, I admit; but look at that—flat as a teaboard—neither depth nor brilliancy. Knox himself strongly resembling in attitude the dragon weathercock on Bow steeple painted black. Has Wilkie become thus demented in compliment to Turner, the Prince of Orange (colour) of artists? Never did man suffer so severely under a yellow fever, and yet live so long. I dare say it is extremely bad taste to object to his efforts; but I am foolish enough to think that one of the chief ends of art is to imitate nature as closely as possible. Look, for instance, at Copley Fielding's splendid drawing in the Water Colour Exhibition, of vessels in a gale off Calshot; and certainly I have never yet seen any thing either animal or vegetable at all like the men, women, trees, grass, mountains, which appear in Mr. Turner's works.

"This is of course an individual opinion, but I think it may be expressed without any fear of incurring a charge of ill-nature, when one thing is recollected. Copley Fielding cannot be a bad artist; Prout cannot be a bad artist; Nash cannot be a bad artist; De Vint, Stanfield, Reinagle, Calcott, none of these can be called bad artists; yet not one of these gentlemen, eminent as they are, produce any thing like Turner's drawings. Now if they are all wrong, Mr. Turner is quite right; but it is utterly impossible he should be so, if they are.

"Everybody knows the story of the sign-painter in the country, who could paint nothing but a red lion; and accordingly he advised every inn-keeper and alehouse-keeper in the neighbouring village, who applied to him, to have the sign of the Red Lion. This did very well for a considerable time, and the painter practised so successfully that not a hamlet or town, for ten miles round, that had not its red lion; until at length a new-comer, who, like Daniel of old, thought there were quite as many lions round him as were wanted, suggested to the artist that he should like to have a swan for the sign of his small concern. In vain the painter protested, Boniface was resolute. 'Well,' said the rural Apelles, 'if you will have a swan you must, but you may rely upon it when it is finished, it will be so like a red lion, you would not know the difference.' So Turner, if he were to paint a blackbird, it would be so like a canary when it was finished, you would not know one from the other.

"Among other sights, I was induced to go and visit the 'Fleas,' last Saturday. Never was there such an imposition; instead of being harnessed, they [pg 396] were tied by the hind legs, and the combatants, poor wretches! were pinched by the tails in tweezers, and of course moved their legs in their agony. Well, thought I, as I went out, I have been in Spain, and Portugal, and Italy, and have passed many a restless night, but hang me if ever I was so flea bitten in my life as I have been to day; and I thought of my shilling and the old proverb.

"There is a picture of Lord Mulgrave in the Somerset House exhibition, very like, painted by Briggs. The best portrait there, is Pickersgill's Lord Hill; as a likeness, it is identity; and I admire it the more, from the total absence of what the painters call accessories. It is simple, and though honourably decorated, is unadorned by what is considered 'groscape' drapery; and yet Mr. Pickersgill was at one time an unqualified admirer of cloaks; every hawbuck of a fellow who sat to him, was wrapped up in a cloak: this he has conquered, and we rejoice at it. The portrait of Lady Coote is a good picture; it is a pity that her ladyship had not sat a few years earlier; but that is no affair of the painter. A picture of Lady Londonderry, in the costume of Queen Elizabeth, by a Frenchman is amazingly like. There is a story about this dress which only proves the advantages of making experiments before any grand display. The petticoat of the Virgin Queen, as personated by her ladyship, was so thickly covered with diamonds, that the substratum of material could scarcely be seen; and nothing could be more splendid than the effect; but the diamonds glittered all round the dress, behind and before, and at the side; and so long as her ladyship paraded the magnificent suite of her apartments, all was well, and all shone brilliantly; but lo and behold, when her ladyship threw herself gracefully on her mimic throne, she found that she might as well be sitting in her robe de chambre on a pebbly pavement, or a heap of flints just prepared for Macadamization. Stones, though precious, are still stones, and the jump the Marchioness gave when she first felt the full effect of her jewels, is described as something prodigious. So handsome a person, however, might easily dispense with such ornaments. A queen of hearts may always look down upon a mere queen of diamonds.

"And what are we to say of other representations? What a sensation (at any other period how much greater would it have been!) Mr. Sheridan Knowles' Hunchback has made: why Mr. Sheridan Knowles made his hero a Hunchback I cannot imagine. The play is an admirable play; and what is as strange a part of the affair as any, is the acting of the author. To say it is finished, or fine, would be to talk nonsense; but it is plain, straightforward, common-scene acting, which very much surprised us, more especially from an author, still more from an Irish author; and more still from an author, who in private life is a perfect enthusiast, and a fine phrenzied-eye orator. Fanny Kemble never appeared to greater advantage in public—in private, her charming conduct with regard to her brother, the young soldier, speaks volumes for her. They say she is going to marry a son of Keppell Craven's, Lord Craven's uncle. They met first, I believe, at the acting of Lord Leveson Gower's play of Hernani, at Bridgewater House, when Mr. Craven reaped much histrionic fame as an amateur. Of one thing we are quite sure, Miss Kemble will act well wherever she may be placed in the world.

"One of the best conundrums I have heard for a long time, is attributed to that excellent and agreeable fellow, Yates, who is amongst those who do credit to the stage. Whether it is his own, or not, is a question to rest upon his veracity. It is this—'When does an alderman look like a ghost?' Answer. 'When he's a gobbling.' This is surely a jeu d'esprit. By the way, Rogers begins to whistle now; not in fear, or harmony, or for amusement, but I am afraid from the effects produced by advanced age. I regret this—he is an excellent person, and a gentlemanly poet; and I never shall forget the patience with which he bore a most unintentional misquotation, made from his works, and in his presence, by a man of the name of Barton, who wanted to compliment him, by recollecting his verses. The story that he quoted was Rogers' pretty song of

"Dear is my little native vale,

The ring-dove builds and warbles there,

Close by my cot she tells her tale,

To every passing villager."

"Mr. Barton—who he was I never found out—having eulogized this little effusion with a superhuman ecstacy, repeated it right to a line—but not to a word. He gave it us thus—

"Dear is my little native vale,

The ring-dove builds and warbles there,

Close by my cot she shows her tail

To every passing villager."

"Not a muscle moved in Mr. Rogers' pale and placid countenance, you would [pg 397] hardly have thought he lived; but turning to Luttrell, whose mouth twisted and whose eye rolled at the fun of the mistake, he simply whispered, 'Non tali auxilio, &c.' Barton survived it, and is still alive and merry.

"I perceive that there have been changes at the Admiralty. Dyer, Darch, and Riley superannuated. Hay takes Darch's place as reading clerk. This is right. Hay is a gentleman, and a man of business. Met Sir Francis—which Sir Francis, you would say, for there are two who frequent the Admiralty, the obtuse and the clever. I mean the clever. 'Well, Frank, how goes on the Vernon, and how did she go off the other day? No want of water, I presume.' 'No; thank heaven for that! Why, she went off beautifully, but the lubberly mateys contrived to get her foul of the hulk, and Lord Vernon came out of the conflict minus a leg and an arm.'—'Who had you there?' 'Upon my honour I hardly know. I was so busy paying my devoirs to Lady Graham; she looked for all the world like a mermaid, as she stood by the bows and christened the vessel. Her hair hung down as straight as the lower rigging when first put over the mast heads.'—'I wish I had such a beautiful mermaid for a wife,' replied H——, who had joined and listened to our conversation. 'What a pretty creature is that Miss E——; she looked as fresh as if she had just come out of a shower bath.' 'Well, so she had.'"

"I went to the Opera on Tuesday to hear Mariani. She is splendid—confounded plain, but that's no consequence. That Grisi screams rather too much, although she acts well, and has a pretty person, if it was washed. I believe Brugnoli's toes are made of cast iron. Toe K—g, could make no impression upon them. You know how K—g obtained that name. He is a little puffy fellow, who goes about town, making acquaintance with every body—is endured at watering places for his poodle qualities of 'fetch and carry:' he is very anxious to become acquainted with noblemen, and his plan is to sidle up and tread very lightly upon an aristocratical toe—then an immediate apology, and the apology is followed also with the wind and weather, and the leading topic of the day, a knowledge of his lordship's friends or relations, and a good morning. The next day when they meet, a polite bow from Mr. K—g, and if an opportunity offers he enters into conversation, and thus establishes his acquaintance.

"Such is his EXTREME method of introducing himself, which deserves credit for its ingenuity and exclusiveness. I once knew a man who had only one story, and that was about a gun. His difficulty was to introduce this story, and he at last succeeded, like K—g, by the use of his foot. When sitting after dinner he would stamp under the table and create a hollow sound. Then, God bless me! what's that—a gun? By the by, talking about guns—and then came his story."



By Robert Montgomery.

The subsequent passages exhibit many of the beauties and few of the blemishes of Mr. Montgomery's new poem:


Oh, when hath mind conceived

Magnificence beyond a midnight there,

When Israel camp'd, and o'er her tented host

The moonlight lay?—On yonder palmy mount,

Lo! sleeping myriads in the dewy hush

Of night repose; around in squared array,

The camps are set; and in the midst, apart,

The curtain'd shrine, where mystically dwells

Jehovah's presence!—through the soundless air

A cloudy pillar, robed in burning light,

Appears:—concenter'd as one mighty heart,

A million lie, in mutest slumber bound.

Or, panting like the ocean, when a dream

Of storm awakes her:—Heaven and Earth are still;

In radiant loveliness the stars pursue

Their pilgrimage, while moonlight's wizard hand

Throws beauty, like a spectre light, on all.

At Judah's tent the lion-banner stands

Unfolded, and the pacing sentinels,—

What awe pervades them, when the dusky groves,

The rocks Titanian, by the moonshine made

Unearthly, or yon mountains vast, they view!

But soon as morning bids the sky exult,

As earth from nothing, so that countless host

From slumber and from silence will awake

To mighty being! while the forest-birds

Rush into song, the matin breezes play,

And streamlets flash where prying sunbeams fall:

Like clouds in lustre, banners will unroll!

The trumpet shout, the warlike tramp resound,

And hymns of valour from the marching tribes

Ascend to gratulate the risen morn.


A vision of that unforgotten prime,

The patriarchal age, when Earth was young,

A while oh: let it linger!—oh the soul

It breaketh, like a lovely burst of spring

Upon the gaze of captives, when the clouds

Again are floating over freedom's head!—

Though Sin had witherd with a charnel breath

Creation's morning bloom, there still remain'd

Elysian hues of that Adamic scene,

When the Sun gloried o'er a sinless world,

And with each ray produced a flower!—From dells

Untrodden, hark! the breezy carol comes

Upwafted, with the chant of radiant birds.—

[pg 398]

What meadows, bathed in greenest light, and woods

Gigantic, towering from the skiey hills,

And od'rous trees in prodigal array,

With all the elements divinely calm—

Our fancy pictures on the infant globe!

And ah! how godlike, with imperial brow

Benignly grave, yon patriarchal forms

Tread the free earth, and eye the naked heavens!

In Nature's stamp of unassisted grace

Each limb is moulded; simple as the mind

The vest they wear; and not a hand but works,

Or tills the ground with honourable toil:

By youth revered, their sons around them grow

And flourish; monarch of his past'ral tribe,

A patriarch's throne is each devoted heart!

And when he slumbers on the tented plain

Beneath the vigil stars, a living wall

Is round him, in the might of love's defence:

For he is worthy—sacrifice and song

By him are ruled; and oft at shut of flowers,

When queenly virgins in the sunset go

To carry water from the crystal wells,

In beautiful content,—beneath a tree

Whose shadows hung o'er many a hallow'd sire,

He sits; recording how creation rose

From nothing, of the Word almighty born;

How Man had fallen, and where Eden boughs

Had waved their beauty on the breeze of morn;

Or, how the angels still at twilight love

To visit earth with errands from the sky.


Terrific bard! and mighty—in thy strain

A torrent of inspiring passion sounds—

Whether for cities by the Almighty cursed,

Thy wail arose—or, on enormous crimes

That darken'd heav'n with supernat'ral gloom,

Thy flash of indignation fell, alike

The feelings quiver when thy voice awakes!—

Borne in the whirlwind of a dreadful song,

The spirit travels round the destin'd globe,

While shadows, cast from solemn years to come,

Fall round us, and we feel a God is nigh!

But when a gladness from thy music flows,

Creation brightens!—glory paints the sky,

The Sun hath got an everlasting smile,

And Earth in temper'd for immortal spring—

The lion smoothes his ruffled mane, the lamb

And wolf together feed, and by the den

Of serpents, see! the rosy infant play.


As o'er the grandeur of unclouded heaven

Our vision travels with a free delight,

As though the boundless and the pure were made

For speculation—so the tow'ring mind,

By inward oracle inspired and taught,

The lofty and the excellent in mind adores.

Then, Saviour! what a paragon art Thou

Of all that Wisdom in her hope creates—

A model for the universe—Though God

Be round us, by the shadow of His might

For aye reflected, and with plastic hand

Prints on the earth the character of things—

Yet He Himself,—how awfully retired

Depth within depth, unutterably deep!

His glory brighter than the brightest thought

Can picture, holier than our holiest awe

Can worship,—imaged only in I AM!

But Thou—apparell'd in a robe of true

Mortality; meek sharer of our low

Estate, in all except compliant sin;

To Thee a comprehending worship pays

Perennial sacrifice of life and soul,

By love enkindled;—Thou hast lived and breathed;

Our wants and woes partaken—all that charms

Or sanctifies, to Thine unspotted truth

May plead for sanction—virtue but reflects

Thine image! wisdom is a voice attuned

To consonance with Thine—and all that yields

To thought a pureness, or to life a peace,

From Thee descends—whose spirit-ruling sway,

Invisible as thought, around us brings

A balm almighty for affliction's hour—

Once felt, in all the fullness of Thy grace

The living essence of the living soul,—

And there is faith—a firm-set, glorious faith,

Eternity cannot uproot, or change—

Oh, then the second birth of soul begins,

That purifies the base, the dark illumes,

And binds our being with a holy spell,

Whereby each function, faculty, and thought

Surrenders meekly to the central guide

Of hope and action, by a God empower'd.


A God with all his glory laid aside,

Behold Him bleeding,—on his awful brow

The mingled sorrows of a world repose—

"'Tis FINISH'D,"—at those words creation throbs,

Round Hell's dark universe the echo rolls—

All Nature is unthroned—and mountains quake

Like human being when the death-pang comes—

The sun has wither'd from the frighted air,

And with a tomb-burst, hark, the dead arise

And gaze upon the living, as they glide

With soundless motion through the city's gloom,

Most awfully,—the world's Redeemer dies.


We quote the following from the Cabinet Cyclopaedia history of these countries:

The Penitential Habit.

"From the fifth century," says Masden, "or from the beginning of the sixth, the custom prevailed in Spain of the infirm, when so heavily afflicted as to be in danger of death, piously assuming the tonsure and the penitential habit, and engaging to continue both through life, if God raised them up. As the use of this penance became common enough to throw discredit on the piety of all who did not thus undertake it, if the sick or dying man was unable to demand the habit, his relations or friends could invest him with it, and his obligation to a penitential life thenceforward was as great as if that obligation had been imposed, not by others, but at his own request, since, as he was charitably supposed to be thus piously inclined, he must of necessity wish to become a penitent. This continued in force until king Chindaswind, impressed with the abuses to which it had given rise, decreed that in such cases the obligation imposed by others should be void unless the patient should afterwards ratify it when in a sound state of mind. Penitents of this class might remain in their own houses, without seclusion within the walls of a monastery; but they were for ever compelled to wear the habit and shaven crown, to shun business and diversions, to lead exemplary and chaste lives: if single, they could not marry; if married, they could not enjoy the privileges of the state: hence, though they inhabited not the cloister, they were of the religious order, and consecrated to God."

[pg 399]

"This penance was not merely assumed by such as were anxious to make atonement for some heavy sin; it was often voluntarily undertaken by individuals whose lives had been blameless, and who were anxious by this work of supererogation to increase their stock of merits. If the penitent died of his disease, the intention of his sacrifice was believed to be availing in the sight of Heaven; if he recovered, he became a monk. No less a doom than excommunication, and a rigorous penitential seclusion during life within the walls of a monastery, were hurled against such as married, or used their conjugal privilege, or laid down the habit. If, however, the married penitents were very young at the time he or she entered on the monastic obligation, in case of recovery the bishop had power to permit the use of matrimony a certain number of years. This was called an indulgence or dispensation, the debitum conjugale being totally annihilated by the obligations of the new state.

"This custom is not yet extinct in Spain, though, like many others of a similar kind, its observance is daily weakening since the period of the French revolution, and of the increased intercourse between the two nations. Many of the greatest names in the Spanish annals voluntarily assumed the profession, and thereby ceased to be laymen. Among these was the author of Don Quixote."



(From the portfolio of a Correspondent.)

There oft times dwells within the human breast, a grievous and a bitter sorrow; a sorrow once formed—seldom, if ever, entirely eradicated. Such sorrow hath borne down to the grave many a noble, though ill-fated, heart; there to seal up the remembrance of the degraded, the broken, feelings of its once fine nature, and for ever crush the spirit of its love. It is a sorrow that cometh not as the whirlwind's rushing blast, in the fury of the tempest, or as the lion's roar; but rather as the soft, still moan of the desert's poisoned breeze, or as the silent gnawing of a cankering worm: so comes it preying on our heart's fondest hopes till they gradually sink to ruin and oblivion. It is a grief that mortal eyes cannot see; it is only keenly felt; its tears are the wasting away of health, and its lamentation is the low beating of a sinking pulse. The loudest cry of its woe is but the dull, bitter sigh of its lonely unhappiness, engendered by the deep misery of the secret depression of its mental complaining, making the heart like a faded flower in a gloomy wilderness; like a blighted tree in a sultry waste. Weep! weep! and sigh from thy very soul; yet thy sorrows will not end; their root will still remain to spring and spread afresh. Unhappy they that such sorrows have! alas! for them! R.N.

Pleasure Gardens.—Has it never occurred to any nurseryman that his garden might be made delightful and profitable promenades for the public, at a low charge for admission? In the neighbourhood of Philadelphia, we learn from a communication to the Gardeners' Magazine, there is a class of gardens very distinct from any in this country; those of plant-growers, who to a small nursery, and green and hot-houses, add the appendage of a tavern. The two principal ones of this description are kept by Mr. Arran, and M. d'Arras: the first has a very good museum in his garden; and the latter possesses a beautiful collection of orange and lemon trees, very large, but trimmed after the French fashion. These places are the resort of many of the citizens; Philadelphia having no park, or national gardens, for the purpose of recreation.

American Prejudice.—Everything British creates a spirit of rivalry among the vulgar Americans. A great number of the workmen's anecdotes are directed against the aristocratical bearing of Englishmen: nothing gives greater delight to the rustics than to hear of the Honourable D.S. or Lord John P. having been the last served, or badly served, at an inn for being surly to the waiters, &c.

Cheap Fruit.—In Philadelphia, peaches are 25 cents, (about a shilling) per bushel; pine-apples from the West Indies from 5 to 15 cents. (2d. to 6d.) each, and water melons cheaper.

Newtown Pippin.—Near New York, at the residence of Mrs. Col. More, is the original tree of the celebrated apple called the Newtown pippin. It stands in the centre of an old orchard; the tree divides itself about 2-1/2 or 3 feet from the ground; but, although the estate has been in the possession of Colonel More's family for two centuries, they are unable to give any account of its origin; consequently the tree must be of very old standing.

Hyde Park on the Hudson River.—Our Hyde Park on this side the water, [pg 400] can bear no comparison with its namesake on the other side of the Atlantic, The latter is extensive; the rides numerous; and the variety of delightful distant views embrace every kind of scenery. The pleasure-grounds are laid out on just principles, and in a most judicious manner; there is an excellent range of hot-houses, with a collection of rare plants; remarkable for their variety, their cleanliness, and their handsome growth. The construction and arrangement of the farm buildings deserve the strongest praise; but, in fact, everything connected with Hyde Park is performed in a manner unparalleled in America. The proprietor of Hyde Park is Dr. David Hosack, a gentleman well known in the literary and scientific world—the Sir Joseph Banks of America.

Modern Cincinnatus.—Near Bordentown, in the state of New Jersey is the seat of the Count de Survilliers, elder brother of Napoleon Buonaparte, and formerly King of Spain. He has effected great improvements on this estate, and is now actively employed in others. It is most gratifying to see this amiable nobleman withdrawing himself from the busy scene of politics into retirement, and expending his princely fortune in rural improvements.

Fiddling Poetry.—The following may be seen in the first volume of Purcell's Catches, on two persons of the name of Young, father and son, who lived in St. Paul's Churchyard; the one was an instrument maker, and the other an excellent performer on the violin:—

"You scrapers that want a good fiddle well strung,

You must go to the man that is old while he's Young,

But if this same fiddle you fain would play bold,

You must go to his son, who'll be Young when he's old.

There's old Young and young Young, both men of renown,

Old sells, and Young plays, the best fiddle in town;

Young and old live together, and may they live long,

Young to play an old fiddle, old to sell a new song."


Greenwich Hospital.—The foundation-stone of this magnificent building was laid June 30, 1696, by John Evelyn (the treasurer), with a select committee of the commissioners, and Sir Christopher Wren, the architect, precisely at five in the evening, after they had dined together! Flamstead, the royal astronomer, observing the punctual time by instruments. The time is not unworthy of remark. The King (Charles II.) subscribed 2,000l.; the Archbishop of Canterbury, Lord Keeper Sommers, Dukes of Leeds, Pembroke, Devonshire, Shrewsbury, and Earls of Dorset and Portland, 500l. each; with others amounting to upwards of 9,000l. According to a note by the Treasurer, four months after the foundation, the work done amounted to upwards of 5,000l. towards which the treasurer had received only 800l., there being among the defaulters the king's 2,000l., paid by exchequer tallies on the post-office, "which," says he, "nobody will take at 30 per cent discount:" so that we see the suspension of great works for want of friends was never uncommon; though this was a "season of debt and disgrace" in England. The sum paid in Evelyn's time towards building Greenwich Hospital, seems to have been upwards of 69,000l.

Major Mason and George II.—During the siege of Fort St. Philip, a young lieutenant of the Marines was so unhappy as to lose both his legs by a chain shot. In this miserable and helpless condition, he was conveyed by the first opportunity to England, and a memorial of his case presented to an honourable Board, in order to obtain some additional consideration to the narrow stipend of half-pay. The honourable Board pitied the youth, but disregarded his petition. Major Mason had the poor lieutenant conducted to court on a public day, in his uniform, where, posted in the guard-room, and supported by two brother officers, he cried out as George II. was passing to the drawing-room, "Behold, great sire, a man who refuses to bend his knee to you; he has lost both in your service." The king, struck no less by the singularity of this address, than by the melancholy object before him, stopped, and hastily demanded what had been done for him. "Half-pay," replied the lieutenant, "and please your majesty." "Fie, fie, on't," said the king, shaking his head, "but let me see you again next levee-day." The lieutenant did not fail to appear at the place of assignation, when he received from the immediate hands of royalty, five hundred pounds, smart money, and a pension of two hundred a-year.

Footnote 1:(return)

Gardens and Menageries of the Zoological Society Delineated Quadrupeds—vol. i.

Footnote 2:(return)

Narrative of a Journey through the Upper Provinces of India, vol. i. 4to., 1828.

Footnote 3:(return)

We are indebted to the Literary Gazette of Saturday last for early cognizance of this extract.

Footnote 4:(return)

In our correspondent's notice of Mrs. Hemans in No. 550, for "Lady then," read "this Lady."

Footnote 5:(return)

See Harl. MSS., No. 1551.

Footnote 6:(return)

"Consolations in Travel, or the Last Days of a Philosopher." 1830.

Printed and published by J. LIMBIRD, 143, Strand, (near Somerset House,) London; sold by ERNEST FLEISCHER, 626, New Market, Leipsic; G.G. BENNIS, 55, Rue Neuve, St. Augustin, Paris; and by all Newsmen and Booksellers.


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